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anna34

Sore Throats And Canker Sores

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Hi all,

I've been gluten-free since March and I'm feeling truly wonderful compared to before. :)

Since going gluten-free I've haven't had sore throats and canker sores like I used to (constant sore throat that wouldn't go away), so I figured that they were caused by the gluten and was quite happy to see them stop. But recently (last few weeks) I've seen them return.

Do any of you know any more about this type of thing? Could it be another food intolerance? Or, should I just chalk it up to the cooler weather and me being the type of person who gets these things?

Any guidance is appreciated.

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Assuming it's not (environmental) allergies, chances are you're being glutened by something. Could it be CC (from your pots and pans, from other food in your home)? Have you recently started buying a new packaged food that you hadn't had before since going gluten free, that might not be as gluten-free as it says it is?

It COULD be another intolerance or a food allergy, but that is not the most common manifestation, and since it was one of your gluten symptoms, I would guess it's from gluten. Canker sores are a common gluten thing (I have 5 right now, have to figure out what I'm eating wrong), and it might be canker sores in your throat that is the "sore throat" you used to get and are getting now.

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I hadn't thought about cc. It does make sense though. If they went away after I started the diet, then it's probably gluten causing them now. Ugh. I wish there wasn't so much detective work with this!

Thanks for the reminder.

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Were you diagnosed with Celiac? If you went gluten free because you noticed gluten was causing sore throats it could be eosinophilic esophagitus. Gluten can be a "trigger" for this disorder. There seems to be a connection to other disorders (ie Barret's esophagus) and Celiac too.

I do suggest following up with a top notch gastroenterologist and a food journal. A food journal is very helpful to find hidden gluten, cross contamination, and other food intolerances. Double check your hygeine products, which may have become cross contaminated or have hidden gluten. (think lip gloss, mouthwash, which is likely but shampoo too. Other products are unintentially ingested.)

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I had the sore throat, and that turned out to be acid reflux. That was the first symptom I noticed, which is still one of my symptoms when I get cross contaminated. If you drink coffee or tea, or eat a lot of chocolate, that could be it. That's where the Barrett's that mommida mentioned usually comes from. Gluten will beat up your stomach, and for the first few months while you're healing, your stomach may be more touchy. Prilosec OTC, Decaf drinks, and limiting greasy foods and chocolate have helped me a lot. But if doesn't get better, then metion it to your doc.

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I used to have canker sores all the time. I still get them when I am glutened. It's one of the sure signs.

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Hmmm...I wasn't gold-standard diagnosed, but my Ttg was in the borderline range. My DD had just been diagnosed and I was feeling terrible, so I decided to just "try out" the diet. Within one day I started to feel better and haven't looked back. So...I guess I'll never officially know if I have celiac, but I feel that I probably do.

I do drink one tea/day and lately have been eating a lot of chocolate. :rolleyes:

Giving up gluten was easy, but chocolate might be more difficult. :P

I've been drinking the tea to soothe my sore throat.

So, should I go to my family doctor and ask for a referral to a gastro? I haven't seen a gastro myself since my DD's ped gastro did my Ttg test.

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As I was thinking about this, I would actually try a few changes to your diet first...I find drinking decaf helps A LOT. Caffeine can be pretty bad for reflux. Add some honey to the decaf tea, too. That's what singers will do when they're sick or have voice issues becasue it coats and soothes the throat. And it's tasty! ;) Switch to decaf or herbal tea (herbal teas with cinnamon will be good for your digestion too. just check the gluten status first! most are gluten-free, but not 100% I think tazo has a good cinnamon tea) Lots of water helps, too, as well as Apple Juice (helps to neutralize the excess acid) Try to moderate your chocolate intake (at least for a week or two!), and if you can avoid soda, that will be helpful too. Also, check how much acidic foods and drinks you consume...OJ, tomatoes, etc, and see if you can limit those. If you smoke, that can aggrivate it as well. The idea is for your stomach produce less acid, which gives your lower esophogeal sphincter (the part that keeps stomach acid in your stomach) time to heal. Hopefully, this will do the trick for you and save you a trip to the doc, time, and money!

I think most doctors would recommend an acid reducer, like Prilosec, if they think it is acid reflux after diet changes don't work. If that helps, that's your answer! Most people I know that have taken it just take for a few weeks, maybe a month or two, and then work off it. (under doctor supervision!). I have a friend who keeps it on hand for occasional use, in case he goes out to eat somewhere he knows will bother his reflux, but doesn't take it most of the time. But I don't think most docs will put you through expensive and intrusive tests if they don't have to.

What I did was try Zegerid OTC and Prilosec after the diet changes. Mind you, this is before I went gluten free. And it worked pretty well, at first. If you try this, don't use it for more than 2 weeks without talking to your doctor. Usually if it works in that time frame, that's your answer! If you want to talk to your doctor, I'm sure that'd be fine. You can get a generic version at Wal-Mart over the counter pretty cheap, and it's gluten free from what I've read. (Just check on that first!) The idea behind it is that it reduces the acid in your stomach, which thereby gives the lower esophogeal sphincter time to heal. The reason it did not work for me long term was that it was the gluten causing the reflux, NOT the other things. Getting rid of gluten is what ultimately got rid of it for me. It wasn't immediate, but it wasn't a terribly long time either (maybe 2 months?). I'll still get reflux if I get glutened somewhere along the way.

Here's some basic info from U.S. Health and Human Services

http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/gerd/

Feel free to PM me if you have any questions! (Or if any of this is unclear. It's the end of my day, and I'm getting ready to head home, so I hope this is coherent! :lol: ) We're here to help!

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I should clarify, I've never had heartburn. It's the back of my throat that hurts - like a surface/scratchy hurt (not a swollen hurt). And, I've been getting canker sores in my mouth and tongue. I don't think that I have an acid reflux problem. More likely, it's gluten cc getting me, or some other food intolerance that I don't know about.

Question - Food Diary? So, I just keep a diary of everything I eat and any reactions I may have? Do I then try eliminating something to see if the sore throats go away? What's the best way to do this to narrow down the cause of my sore throats?

Could it be "post-nasal drip" causing the sore throat? Could that cause cankers too?

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Food diary would definitely be of some use. And the sores themselves - where they are may be of some help, too

A sore throat is actually not uncommon for mild allergies - some foods we only react to when they hit our mucus membranes, like the lips, tongue, mouth - and they tend to inflame our insides some, too, at that point.

If that's the case, usually (but not always), the sores with be mostly on the tongue and the roof of the mouth, potentially in the back of the throat. There would be less sores on the sides of the cheeks, except right in the middle near where the teeth meet. Basically, wherever your food spends the most time, like the middle of your mouth, gets more sores, because it's from contact.

I get sores like that from food allergies that manifested after i went gluten free. I get a sore throat from them too, that surface/scratchy kind of hurt like you mention. It's one of my first reactions to the food. If I get enough of the food, I start getting sores on the very back of my tongue, back of the roof of my mouth. I don't get hives, or itching or anything. Sometimes I feel like I have the flu, or get very tired a little later on. Feel blech that day or the next.

My son gets sores from gluten, and they tend to show up all around his mouth, cheeks, gums, and so on.

Nasal drip could cause the sore throat, but I don't think it usually has the sores along with it, necessarily.

I don't know if it's the best way, but I think the FASTEST way to narrow down issues like this is to drop the 8 most common food allergens from the diet and make food from scratch for a couple weeks. So, no wheat, eggs, dairy, shellfish, fish, tree nuts, nuts, or soy. With these gone, really, you almost HAVE to make everything yourself.

We did this for my kids, and while they don't react to most of these, we ended up using so many purer foods (whole veggies and fruits) that it spaced out the reactions to the 'bad' food. Much easier to track down that way. If you tend to react a lot, chances are that it's something that's either IN a lot of foods, or contaminates a lot of foods.

When foods are added back in, as long as they were plain at first, it helped to see if they were really the problem or not.

For me, I found out my allergies with a limited diet food journal, too, and nearly everything I had mouth/throat issues with tested positive when I finally got allergy testing, as well.

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Thank you for the detailed advice!

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